2016 started with John Legend Slow Dance from his 2006 album “Once Again”. I wanted to dance with him and he obliged. It was just us in the middle of the living room and it was sweet. That relationship did not work out romantically but he is still my friend. We do not slow dance anymore but we keep in touch.
In 2016 I experienced sunshine here and there for days and weeks at a time but for the most part it rained in my life. This is not to say that 2016 was not a good year for me because I am thankful for this beautiful life that I have; it is to say that I knew this year would be different. I came into this year determined to love myself more than I ever have. I came into this year willing to leave those behind that didn’t understand my journey and how God was blessing me to grow. I came into this year a new woman, ready and willing to try something new because the same things that I had done in the past yielded me stagnate results.
To most people I live an incredible life, I am blessed. I have a dope ass life and I buss stupid dope moves. This past year was one that I will never forget. If I could fit everything that happened in my life this past year in this blog I would but I can’t. Below, I will re-cap some highs and lows in my life. The most memorable moments that happened plus, songs that were on my playlist throughout the year.
January- It was officially one year since I took the Communications Coordinator position for the City of Chattanooga Youth and Family Development Department. I faced some challenges in this position but I grew as a media professional and I learned to overcome those obstacles. I truly enjoy the work that I do, I let the masses know the great work that is happening at YFD. As most people do to kick-off the new year I got serious about my fitness journey and at this point I was working out constantly. I focused all my energy on working out and working. I like to keep busy. I was hired to be the event/communications coordinator for Loud Genuis for a sneaker showcase during CIAA in Charolette, NC and I was looking forward to that event. RIP Alan Rickman and David Bowie.
February- All I could think about was if I was going to have a valentine or not and well it turned out NOT. I ended up going to the Universal Soul Circus, it was my first time going and it was a lot of fun. I was off to a good start this month, I spoke to kids, hosted parties, was killing my radio show in ATL on Streetz 94.5 and the Loud Genuis sneaker event was a success for CIAA. The Loud Genius brand was all over the city and it felt good to be a part of a team that was winning. It felt amazing that I brought value to the brand and they appreciated my expertise. Everyone played their part and we all celebrated the moment. RIP Angela “Big Ang” Raiola, Harper Lee, Vanity and Maurice White.
March- Celebrities were pouring into Chattanooga, Eric and I weekend countdown show was getting great reviews. Track 29, a local venue in Chattanooga was bringing hip hop shows back in the city. I completed a 5k for the Chattanooga Marathon, I was so proud. I ran the entire 3 miles and didn’t stop once. I had been committed to eating healthy and working out and was seeing my body transform. I did a photoshoot and loved the pictures. I spent a great deal of quality time with my family and was a mentor in the Mad, Bad and Dangerous 24 hour generator for the purple team and they won 2nd place. I discovered the newly vamped crochet hairstyle and fell inlove with it. I was asked to co-host and executive produce a public access show on a local network and I accepted the new challenge with high hopes of flexing my interviewing skills on this platform. RIP Malik “Phife Dawg” Taylor and Gary Shandling.
April- Hosted more events this month and attended the wedding of Reggie and Monica. I was most excited to attend the Tribeca Film Festival in NYC. It was on my bucket list to attend the screenings, let alone interview on the red carpet. I went as a correspondent for Loud Genius and I couldn’t believe my life. The entire trip was surreal. The list of celebrities that I met and encountered over the span of a few days was solid: LaLa Anthony, Karrueche Tran, Oprah, Gayle King, Trevor Noah, JD Williams,The cast of GreenLeaf, The cast of A Hologram for the King along with Tom Hanks, The cast of Electra Woman and Dyno Girl and the list goes on. I must mention that we hung out with the cast of the new Roots miniseries and I interviewed Nate Parker. I met the international superstar soccer (football) player Pelé. While there we visted the Roc Nation offices and hung out with some incredible people. NYC was such a great time, I want to go back next year. April was one helluva month. I was riding the subway leaving Queens when I learned that Prince had died. RIP Doris Roberts, Nancy Reagan and WWE Star Chyna.
May- Eric and I had our annual boat ride that was a lot of fun, it sold out for the 4th or 5th time in a row. I had a few mentees that shadowed me at work this month. Turned up for mothers day and started my Facebook live cooking videos that were a success. Lil Duval came in town for a comedy show. Later in the month I had a drunken night that ended a friendship… life happens. I came down with a terrible case of laryngitis and couldn’t talk for a about a week or so and that sucked. Memorial Day weekend I hit up a pool party that was most memorable.
June- One of my mentors in the communications field invited me to attend a event at the Google offices and it was a complete blast. I connected with some amazing women doing amazing things. I hit up a few NBA games this month and went to a R. Kelly concert. Riverbed 2016 was a blast because Salt and Pepa performed and they killed their set. Celebrated fathers day and my dad birthday with a brunch and a movie. It was great spending quality time with my dad. This month is special because it was when I officially started my Young Ladies Advocate Group at Avondale YFD (rec.) center. This group is for middle and high school girls and we meet every Thursday at 5:00pm for about an hour or so. Mother Peggy Hunter the first lady of The World’s Church of the Living God passed away. This was a super low for me. RIP to Muhammad Ali, Anton Yelchi and Pat Summit.
July- I wrote an article and it was published in the Chattanooga News Chronicle; it was called, Change Makers Uniting. Celebrated my favorite cousin birthday with laughs, hugs and wine. I worked on the Memorial service for Chattanooga’s fallen 5 heroes. At this time I was still killing my workouts and was feeling good about being consistent. Hit up Dollywood and Splash mountain with my homegirl for a girls trip, it was good to get away. The WOW moment of July and a career high was attending the Democratic National Convention and writing articles for Loud Genius. Talk about being in the room with some of the most powerful men and women in the world. Some notables are: President of the United States Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Melissa Harris-Perry, Jerry Springer, TJ Holmes, Lance Bass, Roland Martin, LZ Grandson, Michael Che, Rosie Perez, Rosario Dawson, AJ Calloway, Mayor Andy Berke and Hillary Clinton to name a few. July was just dope as hell.
August- This month started the decline in my working out and for some reason I was having horrible back pains. I started spending more time in Atlanta. I met Jill Scott whom I adore. We had a great conversation with my mom. I got a chance to catch up with my friend that was being honored and made a dance video on my instagram that got hella views. Work is consistently going good. RIP John Saunders.
September- Isaiah Rashad dropped his first album, The Suns Tirade and I ended up with a mention on his song AA. Apparently he thinks I have a nice ass (he is my homie, we are just friends). One time for those squats I was getting in earlier in the year. I did a soft launch of my website and started writing blogs and releasing them on my social media channels. I did my Nori Cares give-a-way and it was moderately successful. I am thankful I was able to help some people and for the many volunteers that make this event special for everyone. I hosted a workshop with Ashoka representatives that are interested in bringing a pilot program here to Chattanooga. I participated in a community video about East Chattanooga and promoted an event that I am happy I attended. Unbeknownst to me I would meet a man at the end of this month. He simply asked me for my number and asked to get to know me better. I am happy he did. I spent some great quality time with family and hit up a few more events before the month was over. Fun times were had in the month of September. RIP Gene Wilder and Alexis Arquette.
October- I hosted the Black Greek Step Show during UTC homecoming. Hit up a few comedy shows and community events this month. I took some family and friends of mine to the Atlanta Zoo. The highly anticipated film Birth of a Nation was released and flopped in theaters because of an attack on Nate Parkers character. My homegirl called me and asked me to go to Florida free of charge, all I had to do was bring some spending money. I happily packed my bags and was off. We had a ball. This month I went to a women’s conference (#WerkPraySlay) and discovered iMovie as an app on my phone. It is the little things that bring me joy. In the midst of all the fun I was having, work was popping too! RIP Tommy Ford and Arnold Palmer.
November- My birthday month! I turned 33 and I had no idea how I wanted to celebrate. Met and hung out with some dope celebrities, had a girls night at my house and celebrated my birth weekend in Nashville. Decided on a house party at my mom place with family the day of my birthday. After, met some friends and had drinks. It is also my neice birthday month and putting a smile on her face was the mission as she turned 7 this year. I found out that I was up for consideration for some boards in the State and locally. I ate good for Thanksgiving, as a matter of fact I have been eating so good that I put back on the weight that I had lost earlier in the year and a few pounds more. My work load increased and I have been tired more than usual. RIP The Woodmore 6, Florence Henderson, Ron Glass, Glen Ifill, Sharon Jones, Fidel Castro and Janet Reno.
December- I jet setted across the country to Pacific Groove, CA for the BALLE Leadership summit. What an incredible experience and with great people. I came back anticipating a night out on the town with my neice, my homegirl and her son. We took them out for fine dining and to the ballet. They had a great time. The next morning I woke up to find out that my beloved Bishop and mentor had passed away. It was heartbreaking. He had been my Pastor my entire life, 33 years a part of the ministry of WCLG. I was devastated but GOD. Under his leadership I became the professional woman that everyone know me as today. I received the biggest honor of my life when his family asked me to MC his memorial service. I can’t thank the Hunter family enough. I am humbled and blessed to have known such a great Man of God in my life time. I officially received notification that I am a part of the Emerge TN and Chattery boards. I am grateful they see value in my abilities. RIP Raymond Hughes, Alan Thicke, Zsa Zsa Gabor, George Micheal, Alice Drummond, Craig Sager, Rickey “Taadow” Harris and Carrie Fisher.
So, I’ve given you a glimpse into the journey of my life over the past year. It was not perfect but it was mine and I embrace it. I’ve smiled and I’ve cried but most of all I survived… I am grateful!
See you 2017!